Anchor Chain Reef
Scuba Diving in Key Largo with Sail Fish Scuba
Anchor Chain Reef Dive Site Description
Anchor Chain Reef dive and snorkel site is just South of the Wreck of The City of Washington site. The site is named after the massive Anchor block and giant linked chain attached to it, and scattered across the top of the reef. This Block and Anchor Chain are just part of a extensive set of them at this Barrier Reef called Elbow Reef. Back in the Early 1900’s these were put at this area ( so the stories go ) for the very large fishing boats to be able to unload to a massive Barge that was anchored here as a floating work station. The very large off-shore fishing boats would come to this floating work station barge, unload their catch and then the workers would sort everything out and clean the catch right here before loading it onto much smaller “fast boats”. These fast boats would bring everything the 5.25 miles back to Key Largo Garden Cove dock area for unloading. Hurricane Donna in 1960 had other plans for this barge anchored at the Elbow reef. The winds were so strong, causing massive waves to crazy heights, and ripped the Chains that held the large barge loose. The barge went adrift in the stormy seas and ironically got shoved hard into the shallow ocean floor just at the end of the canal at the entry way to Garden Cove docks. This barge remains there to this day! At low tide most of barge is exposed, and at high tide it appears to be sinking.
The large Anchor Blocks & massive chain all remain exactly as Hurricane Donna left them years ago.
Anchor Chain Reef Additional Information
At this site, there are 2 interesting swim through areas which divers love. There are a few massive patches of thriving Elkhorn Corals which extend to within 16 feet of the surface of the Ocean. The sandy bottom makes a perfect place for Peacock flounder to hang out. Nurse sharks and Southern stingrays are commonly see here. All varieties of corals and reef fish can be seen here as well.
Max depth: 32 feet and shallowest areas on top of reef are as close as 16 feet from the surface of the Ocean